Tag Archives: Oceanographic Tools

Plankton Tow

Plankton Tows are a great Oceanographic tool used to sample the microscopic life in the ocean. A jar is attached to the end of the net, while the two are pulled by a boat or dingy. In order to increase the amount of plankton in the jar, a longer tow is suggested. As the tow is pulled through the water excess water will exit through the mesh netting while the plankton is trapped into the jar at the end. To examine these microscopic organisms, you will need a microscope!

Depending on the size of the mesh netting you will collect different types of plankton. Large mesh netting will only collect large zooplankton (animal plankton), while smaller netting will allow you to collect not only those large zooplankton but also phytoplankton (plant-like plankton)! Here at CIMI we use the smallest mesh netting possible to allow students to see both zoo and phytoplankton. After examining you plankton sample you may be able to tell what ocean organisms are reproducing, or how the ocean’s temperature or currents are behaving.

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We would like to thank you for visiting our blog. Catalina Island Marine Institute is a hands-on marine science program with an emphasis on ocean exploration. Our classes and activities are designed to inspire students toward future success in their academic and personal pursuits. This blog is intended to provide you with up-to-date news and information about our camp programs, as well as current science and ocean happenings. This blog has been created by our staff who have at least a Bachelors Degree usually in marine science or related subjects. We encourage you to also follow us on Facebook, Instagram, Google+, Twitter, and Vine to see even more of our interesting science and ocean information. Feel free to leave comments, questions, or share our blog with others. Please visit www.cimi.org for additional information. Happy Reading!

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